Posted Tuesday, May 26, 2009 9:20 AM | Contributed by Jeff
The gates were open for the first time at Freestyle Music Park this weekend. So how did park-goer's like it and was it what park officials had hoped for? Hard Rock Park may have been a one hit wonder, but locals and tourists seem to be enjoying the new Freestyle Music Park.
For an overview of what's available at the park, read more from The Sun News.
I'm certainly glad to hear a positive response from the public. If they notice the changes that have been made are beneficial to them as a family, that's a great thing. It means the changes in the park were substantial enough to be noticed and effective.
Teknoscorpion and I were there on Sunday. We never got to visit it as Hard Rock Park, but there was evidence of several things having been ripped out and Clint pointed out a lot of things that he knew had been changed. I found the place to be very disappointing and not worth returning to unless they build a woodie or a better steel coaster than what they currently have. It was a little nicer at night when you could not see how empty and open the park is. The night show "Kiss The Sky" was pretty cool, especially since it opened with Van Halen's "Eruption", and there was a live band playing near the front of the park, but they were only playing 90s alternative rock (blech).
Time Machine starts off as one of the best paced B&M loopers ever, but then it totally dies at the block brake and just meanders to the end, exactly like so many of us suggested when we first saw that model a couple of years ago. The ferris wheel lift on Roundabout is kinda cool, but afer the great first drop, that ride is nothing special. The re-themed dark ride is absolutely horrible. The best "ride" is the opstacle course thing where you walk the ropes while you're in a harness hanging from the track above you. That was fun.
The Iceskating show was pretty cool despite being country music, but the CSI show was horrible.
There were some nice things, but overall the place just couldn't hold my interest. It's probably in the bottom 50 of the over 100 parks I've visited. And Clint seemed to feel about the same.
Too bad. I'd imagine the increase in attendance might have something to do with the huge amount of press the park received. They just wanted to check out the traffic accident.
One of the locals working the Nightmare Haunted House near the Pavilion's gravesite mentioned the tourism decline ever since the Pavilion closed and said Hard Rock Park was a dumb idea since it was inland away from the beach where all the tourists tend to stay. He didn't seem to realize it had reopened.
The park was far from "busy" on Sunday when we were there. Everything except Time Machine (Led Zeppelin for those that missed the memo) was a walk-on and Time Machine would have been a walk-on if they ran more than one train. In the evening there were way more people yet Time Machine was still never more than a 3-train wait.
The staff was extremely friendly. The park certainly has potential, but it needs a lot more to do and a lot more theming/atmosphere. Apparently they aren't able to take advantage of the high tech sound system through out the park due to it being Hard Rock's intellectual property. Also there is no shade anywhere and most of the midway is bright concrete that was blinding me even with my sunglasses on. It makes Cedar Point look like Knoebels! It's absolutely the brightest park I've ever visited.
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